At what cost?
Our sources have revealed that NVIDIA has announced another round of price cuts to its AIBs (board partners) on the 9800 GTX, GTX 260 and GTX 280 GPUs.
It’s taking a further $17 off the 9800 GTX, which on top of the $30 channel rebate and £60 reduction announced when AMD/ATI launched the HD 4800 series, gives it a net price to AIBs of $165. This makes the target selling price of $199 very achievable.
If it hasn’t already, NVIDIA is chopping $30 off the AIB price of the GTX 260, leaving it at $222. The recommended selling price is apparently $329, which seems a healthy margin.
Again, if it hasn’t already, NVIDIA is knocking $90 off the AIB price of the GTX 280 to $392. The recommended selling price for the 280 is now $499.
A quick look at Scan this morning reveals that the price cuts have already taken effect. The BFG GTX 280 is going for £351.31, down from £422.87. The XFX GTX 260 XXX is now £246.69, down from £283.52, while the cheapest 9800 GTX is a mere £129.23.
An interesting issue arising from this move is the extent to which NVIDIA is protecting its AIBs and the broader channel from these price cuts. Even if it just protects the AIBs it could be looking at an additional bill of $10 million or so and, obviously, if it extends that to the entire channel the figure will be considerably higher.
The dilemma for NVIDIA is that any channel partners who it doesn’t protect are bound to be pretty unhappy at being left with stock that is now worth considerably less than it did when they bought it.
We would like to hear from any readers who have these GPUs in stock and find out if they have been informed of these price cuts by NVIDIA and if it is giving them price protection.
Additionally, in our poll of HEXUS readers in which we asked what their next graphics card was going to be, there has so far been an overwhelming preference for AMD/ATI cards. We would like to know if these price cuts have changed your mind.